Question CPU Overheating but nothing seems to be wrong... I cannot find the issue and need some help

Dec 16, 2021
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Hello to whoever is reading this! First off I will list my PC specs...

Ryzen 7 3700xt
Radeon 5700xt
16gb XPG 3000Mhz RAM
240mm liquid CPU cooler
3 Intake fans in front, 2 output fans on top and 1 output fan in the back
2TB HDD
1TB SSD
1TB M.2 NVMe
750W Power Supply

So I bough this PC prebuilt from iBuyPower back in June 2020 and received it in July 2020. It has run great ever since I got it, until recently. About 3 weeks ago it started randomly shutting off when I was loading up a game or closing one out. Black screen, lights out, no signal to monitor. This had never happened before and I was not sure what was wrong. A friend suggested that the CPU could be overheating, so I started monitoring the temps and it was true. my PC was idling at about 65-75 degrees Celsius with no games running. I tried loading Apex Legends and I watched the CPU temp hit 102C before the PC shut off. My CPU cooler pump is still going at 4300RPM but the radiator is cool to the touch. So I figured it could be a thermal paste issue, so I got new thermal paste and reapplied it. Perfect! My PC was idling at 40-45 and running games at 65-70 for a few days. I thought my problem was solved, but then while I was simply using Google and Microsoft Word about 5 days later the PC shut off again. I rebooted and checked the temps and you bet it was idling in the high 60s low 70s again, and it is currently running at 76C while I'm typing this. When I was just playing Apex and Valorant it got up to almost 100C so I stopped playing. I don't know what else to do. My cooler is still good, and it was working fine for a few days after I changed the thermal paste, but now it randomly isn't working again. I have no idea what could be happening and I would appreciate any help I can get.

Thanks!
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Are you unwilling to go with air cooling?
It's not that I am unwilling, but I just spent $1500 on this system a year ago, and it has never had an issue. I really do not want to buy a new cooler. This cooler is still functioning properly (pump is running, no gargling or bubbles) and I don't really want to spend more money on this PC.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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It's not that I am unwilling, but I just spent $1500 on this system a year ago, and it has never had an issue. I really do not want to buy a new cooler. This cooler is still functioning properly (pump is running, no gargling or bubbles) and I don't really want to spend more money on this PC.
Also a thought, after reapplying new thermal paste the temps were really good for almost 5 days. I was actively monitoring them while using my PC for 3-4 days after I applied new paste and the temps were always within normal ranges even when gaming which tells me that the cooler itself must be functioning still.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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Regarding the cooler, you say "now it randomly isn't working again" and "is still functioning properly".

So, I'm wondering about reasons for overheating that don't involve the cooler.

In my experience, thermal paste lasts for years....3, 4, or more, without noticeable degradation.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Regarding the cooler, you say "now it randomly isn't working again" and "is still functioning properly".

So, I'm wondering about reasons for overheating that don't involve the cooler.
I am saying that my cooler is mechanically functioning properly, as in the pump is working and the fluid is moving through the cooler. After applying new paste, the temps were good for almost 5 days with heavy use which means the cooler must still be functioning properly. I meant, in general, my PC isn't working because the CPU is overheating. I don't know anything about drivers and software, so could it be something like that causing my CPU to go haywire and work double time for no reason?
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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It's peculiar that new paste seemingly helps, but only for a few days. If it helped and nothing else changed, I'd expect it to continue to help beyond 5 days.

Although I wouldn't expect new paste on a 1 year old PC to be necessary anyway.

I know little about liquid coolers.

Have you examined Task Manager or any hardware monitor you may have when it is running hot for any sign that the CPU is working very hard....harder than you would expect?
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Well, I decided to take the cooler off again and look at the distribution of the paste and it was covering the bottom half and the top right corner but the top left side had no paste at all. I removed the paste, applied more and put the cooler on. then I took it back off to see that I made a better spread pattern this time and it was a nice circle in the middle. So i cleaned it off one last time and reapplied it the exact same way. Here we are now running at 59.3C as I'm typing this with a minimum temp of 48.4C and a max of 75.0C since I turned it on. Still very hot. task manager is open and CPU usage is at 6%.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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I am now idling with google, task manager, and HWMonitor open at 83.5C. its worse than it was an hour ago lol I have no idea what to do here. I just wanna play games man... On HWMonitor it says "Chassis #7 Fan 65,280RPM" which is very obviously not true. But how can I tell if this is the reading for my cooler pump? Are there other software you know of that show CPU fan speed specifically? If it is reading this it could actually be broken.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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Have you verified hot temps with more than 1 temp monitoring program?

HWInfo is a good program, but it isn't necessarily accurate on all sensors.

Right now, it shows one of my temps at 93 degrees. Obviously bogus. Not the CPU, but you get the idea.

Have you eyeballed all fans to confirm they are spinning at some seemingly reasonable RPM?

Have you experimented with swapping fans to different connectors to identify what Chassis Fan 7 is?
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Right now I have HWMonitor, AMD Radeon Software, SpeedFan, and MSI Afterburner all monitoring the CPU temperature, and all but SpeedFan are reading my CPU temp as 70C right now. Although, SpeedFan says the CPU temperature is still 56C which is still too hot for doing practically nothing. SpeedFan and HWMonitor both say my CPU fan speed is ~4200RPM, so I don't think the "Chassis #7" in HWMonitor is the CPU fan. All 6 of my case fans are running at normal speeds.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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Don't think I can help any more.

My offhand guess is that it's some peculiarity with liquid cooling where I have little knowledge.....assuming your temps are in fact high and that nothing is pounding on the CPU unbeknownst to you.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Don't think I can help any more.

My offhand guess is that it's some peculiarity with liquid cooling where I have little knowledge.....assuming your temps are in fact high and that nothing is pounding on the CPU unbeknownst to you.
Lafong, I appreciate your attempt at solving the issue. I am also unsure of what is happening and also unsure of what could be wrong with the liquid cooler of that is what’s causing the problem. I see nothing hammering in the CPU in task manager, so maybe it’s a driver issue or some other software thing I know nothing about. I look forward to seeing other people’s suggestions.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Phaaze88

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Yes, the link works.

Well, that sucks, and you've even got the radiator mounted correctly...
These models are part bad design and part poor QC.

Can you feel both tubes while the cpu is under a load? IF the pump is working correctly, you should NOT be able to tell a significant difference between them.
IF there is, then this unit needs to go. Perhaps the impeller has come loose - I'm not sure, but whatever it is, it's not something you can service.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Yes, the link works.

Well, that sucks, and you've even got the radiator mounted correctly...
These models are part bad design and part poor QC.

Can you feel both tubes while the cpu is under a load? IF the pump is working correctly, you should NOT be able to tell a significant difference between them.
IF there is, then this unit needs to go. Perhaps the impeller has come loose - I'm not sure, but whatever it is, it's not something you can service.
Am I feeling for vibration when I feel the tubes or am I feeling for heat? What troubles me is the radiator itself is cool to the touch when the CPU is running at like 85C or higher which does not make sense. Both of the tubes feel warm and so does the very bottom of the radiator where they are connecting, but 99% of the radiator is cool to the touch even at very high temperatures.
 

Phaaze88

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You're feeling the tubes for heat.
A)You don't really notice a difference between them = Good.
B)One tube feels noticeably cooler than the other - almost cold = Bad.

If A, then I'd have to take the cpu mount into question. If B, pump failure, and it's on its way out.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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You're feeling the tubes for heat.
A)You don't really notice a difference between them = Good.
B)One tube feels noticeably cooler than the other - almost cold = Bad.

If A, then I'd have to take the cpu mount into question. If B, pump failure, and it's on its way out.
It is A. The tubes felt the same when I felt them earlier.
 
Dec 16, 2021
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Then something's wrong at the cpu block, either with the hardware securing the block to the cpu, or the backplate behind it.
Loose or missing screw?
I don't know how something like this could occur. The PC worked fine for over a year, it has rarely been moved, how would screws come lose and get lost? I also don't know where to look either way. Do you think it could be the drivers or something causing the CPU to over heat? Cache can't clear something? Anything along those lines?
 

Phaaze88

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Shoddy assembly work - whoever put it together didn't fully secure some of those screws, and vibrations from moving parts, such as fans and pump, did the rest over time.

Do you think it could be the drivers or something causing the CPU to over heat?
Did you pay IBP for a cpu overclock, or overclocked the cpu yourself? Then no.


There's not too many ways to troubleshoot this.
If the pump is working and liquid flowing as it should[that's why I asked you to feel the temperature of both tubes while the cpu was under load],
If the cpu isn't overclocked[a 240mm AIO should handle an OC'ed 3700X just fine, unless the fans are choked, plus someone set the Vcore to a constant 1.45v or worse with no chance to run lower voltage],
That leaves the cooler mounting. IF that also checks out, then I will be stumped...
 
As stated above your AIO is dead or dying.
If the CPU is hot and the radiator is cold then the pump is not working.
Most AIO water coolers have mixed metals. Which causes corrosion.
This corrosion usually clogs up the micro-fins on the CPU block.
Moving the block to repaste probably dislodged the corrosion.
After a few days running it clogged again.
Most likely time for a new CPU cooler.
 

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